I think I mentioned before that I was one of the last hold outs on the whole “smart phone” thing. I have a cell phone, but it just makes calls and texts. The fact that I can text puts me above, say, my parents, but that’s about it. Otherwise I am left in the dust. Get out of the way, you stupid cars, my buggy has just as much right to be here as you do.
It’s strange to think that it wasn’t all that long ago (for someone who is like farthead 40) that we didn’t even have the things. Can you remember what that was like? I can. It was such a total pain. Like you had to go inside a building, or to a phone booth, and call someone if you needed something. I’m pretty sure even homeless people have smart phones at this point, and they are only on the street corner to catch a Pokemon*. But not me. I didn’t even get my “dumb phone” until I was pregnant with crazy baby (Thing Two) . I was at a point where it would not have been at all odd for me to suddenly burst into flames and have the doctors call it “just another wacky pregnancy thing”. So I wanted a phone in case of baby emergency, and we weren’t even close to labor yet.
I think most people started that way. I need a phone for emergencies. Also to talk to my mom. And keep tabs on my boyfriend. And crush candy and pretend farm and catch imaginary monsters. It’s IMPORTANT. Heck with you, Superman, who now has to run inside a J.C. Penny’s to change thanks to us getting rid of the phone booths; we need our phones. Why? Because everyone else needs them, and the world goes along with everyone else. It’s like everyone else is on cocaine, and I better get drugs fast, or I am never gonna fit into this world at all.
Are they even called smart phones anymore? This is how out of touch I am.
Wait. This is exactly what happened in Wonderland – you gotta be stoned to fit in. Well, I guess we crossed that bridge with the presidential election a long time ago, so whatever. My kids are some of the last kids not to have smart phones. What is a good age to get a kid one of these phones? I’ve seen toddlers with them, because you never know when little Jaxxon will need to make an urgent phone call. “Juuuuice!” is something I so often hear them scream into their phones. Or text with their pudgy fingers. But seriously, no, it’s the educational games on the phones they like. Because “Peek-a-Boo” takes up way too much time, and uses your hands, and now our wrists hurt from carpal tunnel. But please give it back because Mommy has stuff to do. Her crops are wilting, her boss has more Pokemon power-ups than she does, and Daddy is not going to stalk himself.
I don’t know what a Pokemon power-up is and I don’t want to know.
What’s this about stalking? Oh, that’s a fun thing I learned from a 20-something co-worker a while back. “See,” she said happily. “I can tell where everyone I know is right now. Here is my boyfriend at work. Here’s mom at the grocery store. Here’s all 72 of my best friends at the mall.” I found this a little disconcerting. “What if you don’t want someone to know where you are 24/7?” I asked. She looked at me with a face that clearly did not comprehend the question. Of COURSE you would want to know where everyone was all the time. I told my husband about this feature. He said if we ever get smart phones, he is tossing his in a truck going cross country. I don’t blame him.
Yet I can only hold out so much longer because the world changes to fit our technology. My kids are actually expected to have it and bring it to school for “Share your technology day” where they use their own expensive electronic devices instead of the school supplying them, and if these devices should be lost or stolen, the school is in no way responsible please sign here.
It’s not just phones, though, it’s technology period that is going haywire (pun intended). Phones are just mini computers now, even smaller than the NUC on my desk. That’s NUC not Nuke, though it certainly sounds like I have a rather dangerous bomb on my desk, but believe me it’s not even half as useful. See at work they took away our computer towers and gave us these tiny boxes that have like one whole usb port in them for you to plug your stuff in, which certainly beats the towers which had a CD drive, several usb ports, and acted as a nice shelf for my office mate and me. We were not impressed with these new boxes. Yeah, they were smaller, but with one port you had to get another thingy to plug into it that is a square thing with 4 ports on in, so you can actually plug more than one thing in it at a time. If you want me to explain what a usb port is, you are worse off than I am, but not by much. All I know is it’s like an outlet. I’m not even totally versed on how electricity works, except that you plug something in and ‘bing’ a light comes on. It could be fairies coming through the wires for all I know (or care).
I don’t adjust well to new things, especially technology. I refused to learn that wild mp3 thing until my husband bought one for me and showed me how and then I really liked this little thing I could store my music on. Except now mp3 players, like the Sony Walkman cassettes and CDs, are so old that my snobby computer refuses to recognize the software. Seriously, it just totally ignores it, like, you are so not worth my time. Why? Because you can get that on your phone. Along with a camera, a GPS, a best friend (hi Siri), and God only knows what else. Why do my devices have to multitask? I don’t expect my dryer to also take selfies and cook me a mean pot roast. It dries clothes. That’s it. But the computer at your fingertips does everything. You can pay bills on the phone. You can also check out books.
It should be known that I did not start using the library computer catalog until they removed the physical card catalog – the one with all the cards in it. And I was one of them “Youngins” then.
Yet you have to eventually give in just to keep up in this world. I don’t want to be the only one not getting mugged in alleys or falling off cliffs while chasing pretend monsters. So I guess I’ll have to get the smart phone. And update my computer. You know. Eventually.
When they take away my pay-by-the-month dumb phone, most likely.
*I so did not use Pokemon in the title just to get more hits. Okay, I did.
People say flying is safer than driving. I think there are a lot of reasons behind this. For one thing, most people have a couple of cars, but few people have a couple of planes parked in front of their houses. Unless they’re John Travolta. Which means most people drive a lot more than they fly. So there are more wrecks than there are plane crashes.
Doesn’t mean planes are way better than cars. I like what one comedian said about it – “At least when my car stalls, I don’t plummet 30,000 feet.” Good point, man.
Same with computers. I like computers. They make a lot of stuff easier. You can copy and paste without glue, and you can save entire books to tiny travel drives that you can then lose, and you don’t get ink on your fingers or bed sheets. I used to write in spiral notebooks with an erasable ink pen. I couldn’t erase the ink off my sheets, which happened because I always had a spiral and a pen in my bed writing stories, and sometimes forgot about them. I used to have stacks of these notebooks.
I don’t write by hand much anymore. I blame school for destroying my hand with all the notes I had to write. My hand cramps if I write more than a paragraph now. But that’s okay, because we have computers, and we can store stuff on the Internetz or even better on the Cloud.
I like clouds. Sometimes they look like bunnies, or Velociraptors. I’m not so sure about storing information on them. They don’t seem that stable, what with the fluffiness.
Last night I wrote on a story. I spent a few hours. And then I saved it. I’m pretty sure I did, because it always asks if I’m sure I don’t want to save and it didn’t ask that. Computers are supposed to check on you in case you’re stupid that way. Right after it disappeared from the screen, I could not find it. I thought it was accidentally saved in a temporary file. You can’t find those blasted things for anything. I did all the stuff it said to recover files in the troubleshooting guide, except actually shoot the computer, which I was tempted to do.
I think my work is on a freaking cloud somewhere. Poof.
Pen and ink might be old fashioned. But when I’m done writing, it doesn’t plummet 30,000 feet into the cybersphere either. Sometimes I miss the old days, even with inky sheets.